Monthly Archives: April 2018

Container Gardening Tips for Newbies

 

Container Gardening Tips for Newbies
Container Gardening Tips for Newbies

Container gardens can create a natural sanctuary in a busy city street, along rooftops or on balconies. You can easily accentuate the welcoming look of a deck or patio with colorful pots of annuals, or fill your window boxes with beautiful shrub roses or any number of small perennials. Whether you arrange your pots in a group for a massed effect or highlight a smaller space with a single specimen, you’ll be delighted with this simple way to create a garden.

Container gardening enables you to easily vary your color scheme, and as each plant finishes flowering, it can be replaced with another. Whether you choose to harmonize or contrast your colors, make sure there is variety in the height of each plant. Think also of the shape and texture of the leaves. Tall strap-like leaves will give a good vertical background to low-growing, wide-leaved plants. Choose plants with a long flowering season, or have others of a different type ready to replace them as they finish blooming.

Experiment with creative containers. You might have an old porcelain bowl or copper urn you can use, or perhaps you’d rather make something really modern with timber or tiles. If you decide to buy your containers ready-made, terracotta pots look wonderful, but tend to absorb water. You don’t want your plants to dry out, so paint the interior of these pots with a special sealer available from hardware stores.
Cheaper plastic pots can also be painted on the outside with water-based paints for good effect. When purchasing pots, don’t forget to buy matching saucers to catch the drips. This will save cement floors getting stained, or timber floors rotting.
Always use a good quality potting mix in your containers. This will ensure the best performance possible from your plants.

If you have steps leading up to your front door, an attractive pot plant on each one will delight your visitors. Indoors, pots of plants or flowers help to create a cosy and welcoming atmosphere.
Decide ahead of time where you want your pots to be positioned, then buy plants that suit the situation. There is no point buying sun lovers for a shady position, for they will not do well. Some plants also have really large roots, so they are best kept for the open garden.

If you have plenty of space at your front door, a group of potted plants off to one side will be more visually appealing than two similar plants placed each side. Unless they are spectacular, they will look rather boring.
Group the pots in odd numbers rather than even, and vary the height and type. To tie the group together, add large rocks that are similar in appearance and just slightly different in size. Three or five pots of the same type and color, but in different sizes also looks effective.

With a creative mind and some determination, you will soon have a container garden that will be the envy of friends and strangers alike.

Easy Does It With Robotic Lawn Mower

Everything is automated nowadays. Seems like every manufacturer’s aim in innovating a product is to make it all faster and simpler. Washing and cleaning has been automated since long ago. Now here comes robotic lawn mower. You thought that mowing the lawns was a breeze after those industrial machines came out right? Well, those became obsolete with the entry of these intelligent robotic lawn mowers.

Imagine mowing the lawn right there under the cool shade of your front porch. All you need is to push the button on the remote, look at the robotic lawn mower, and make sure it is right where the grass is thick.

The robotic lawn mower effectively mows lawn of regular size, within its average run time of 1.5 hours. But it depends on the power of the mower, of course. The bigger it is, the longer the run time it will have. It is equipped with a rechargeable battery to power up the blades. The downside though is that the battery needed recharging for 24 hours. Well, that’s an entire day. If your lawn were so big, like an acre big, you’d have to purchase an extra battery for you to be able to mow the entire area in a day.

For the robotic lawn mower to be within the area, you would have to setup a perimeter wire. It’s a special kind of wire that comes with the robot mower. Some wires can be planted underground. This sounds to be a taxing job, but you can do it in less than an hour if you have a relatively small yard. The wires be detected by the robotic lawn mower and then would turn the other way. You wouldn’t want it straying away towards your neighbor’s lawn, would you? With this perimeter fence, you can protect your flowerbeds and garden. Run the wire around it and the robotic lawn mower would leave it alone.

Slopes up to 20 degrees should be tolerable for the robotic lawn mower. Protruding tree roots should not be a problem either. With its robotic blades, the lawn mower would run around the perimeter wires first and proceed to the middle area, moving in a V pattern. This means that the robotic lawn mower might cover a certain area multiple times while missing a certain part several times over. Looking on the bright side, you’re not the one getting tired anyway.

The cost of the robotic lawn mower doesn’t seem to be an issue. It actually costs less than those heavy-duty regular lawn mowers. Given that, if and when you feel that your old trusty lawn mower needs back up or even a replacement, trying the robotic lawn mower might be a good idea.

Robotic lawn mowers sure catch attention. Well, you can always ask your neighbor or pay a kid to trim your lawn, but one way or another, you would have to do it yourself sometimes. And with the robotic lawn mower just waiting for orders at your backyard, lawn mowing would be almost effortless.

All About Riding Lawn Mowers

All About Riding Lawn Mowers
All About Riding Lawn Mowers

Most riding lawn mowers are machines fun to ride and extremely cool to look at. However, they are just a dream for many gardeners who can not afford one of these powerful gardening equipment. A riding mower can be a practical time saving machine for professionals as well as for beginner or amateur landscapers. If you are on of those homeowners, lucky to maintain a large yard, it can be a good idea to invest in a riding mower.

Basics of lawn mowers

We will explain first the type of mowers on the market and then which one would fit better with your current needs. Basic riding mowers are actually those featuring rear engines. They use to come with small horsepower engines, usually mounted under the operator’s seat. These mowers have reasonable power sized cutting blades and fit perfectly into small lawns with less than 1 acre.

The next level up is for medium horsepower riding lawn mowers; these mowers use to include their engines at the front; there can fit larger engines due to the space. They have a stronger and faster cutting capacity. Medium riding mowers provide better performance on hilly gardens and are the perfect complement for yards between 1 and 3 acres. Commercial riding lawn mowers are designed for really large yards, including sport fields, they can be extremely expensive for homeowners and won’t really provide their best performance in yards no bigger than 3 yards.

Here you can find some important points to have in mind before you decide on the most suitable model that would better fit with your necessities. The final choose will depend basically on:

The type of terrain of your mowing area as well as the size of it. And what other tasks would you like to do with your new lawnmower?. It is also very important to know whether or not the area includes slopes or hilly areas. The most flat is your mowing area the better performance you will get from the machine.

It is always extremely important to select a comfortable seat, especially when you will be sitting for a long time. You will save a lot on back injuries and other common diseases related with sat jobs. There is no choice with that, it’s preferable that the mower’s seat be comfortable enough, donít make the mistake that most do, it worth.

Does the garden include trees or rocks that require permanent change of direction during the mowing process? It’s very important to find all the finishing touch to choose amongst steering wheels and tires.

There are different bagging or recycling grass options; here you have mainly to mulching or to bagging. While mulching will cut the grass into fine clippings and then give it back to your lawn, providing nutrients to it, the second will just fill up a rear bag, being easier for the rider to empty and replace it with new ones.

There are many attachments on the market to choose from. You probably just need a riding lawnmower including normal features. In addition, you can usually attach other features, like the ones to remove snow during winter time.

A Summer Garden for the Birds

There are many reasons to create a summer garden the best however, as most gardeners are well aware is for your personal enjoyment. For bird lovers everywhere it is quite possible to have a fabulous summer garden that appeals to the bird lover in them as much as a lover of beauty that exists within us all (there are of course a few disagreements along the way as to what beauty is and is not). If you are a bird lover you should seriously consider making efforts to make your summer garden more attractive to your fine feathered friends.

There are several ways this goal may be accomplished. First of all birds like water. They need to drink water and they actually enjoy playing in the water. With this in mind make sure there is some sort of water source available for the birds to enjoy in your summer garden. Some excellent choices would be a water fountain, a goldfish pond, or a waterfall. The key in this is to make sure that the water source is not a stagnate water source as you want to attract birds and not mosquitoes. Other than that, have fun creating a neat place for your bird pals to frolic and play.

As far as attracting specific birds, you will need to research the specific birds you are interested in attracting to your summer garden and plant accordingly. The variations are virtually limitless and far too numerous to include in this brief overview. Be sure to invest some degree of time when planning your garden to check into favorite birds and the flowers or trees they prefer. You should also take the time to study their predators and avoid creating a friendly atmosphere for the predators to hang out in your summer garden while you are doing your research.

Another way to attract birds to your summer garden is by creating an environment in which they feel safe and at home. Plant trees that these birds favor for building nests or place birdhouses in your garden that will provide a great potential home for these birds to make their own.

In addition to planting flowers and trees that will attract various birds to your summer garden you should also take care to attract food to your summer garden for these desirable birds as well. If you aren’t sure about attracting food for the birds you might want to consider providing food for these birds you are hoping to draw into your summer garden. You can accomplish this by filling bird feeders (make sure you use feeders that are designed to prevent squirrels from stealing the food intended for your birds) with foods that attract the birds you are most interested in attracting to your lawn.

There is no right or wrong way to create a peaceful and relaxing summer garden. If you wish to add to your enjoyment of your garden it is quite possible to do this by taking a few extra steps and landscaping with the birds you enjoy watching in mind. The steps above will help make your garden an attractive place to favorite birds to play and build their homes. Incorporate them all into your summer garden for best results and the opportunity to live in harmony with the birds you enjoy watching.

Misconceptions Surrounding Composting

Misconceptions Surrounding Composting
Misconceptions Surrounding Composting

Composting can benefit your garden and the planet (when done on a large scale) in many
ways. A lot of people may shy away from composting because of some common myths
or misconceptions. Listed below are some of the most common untruths followed by the
real information.

* Composting is creating new dirt. Actually composting is not dirt, soil, or earth
but it is humus  decayed matter that provides nutrients to soil.
* It takes a lot of time and effort to compost. Once you have your compost bin set-
up all you will only have to add new materials and turn or rotate the piles once in
a two day period.
* Having a compost is too smelly. If your compost bin has a bad odor, something is
wrong. You need to ensure there is enough air circulation and the right
combination of green and brown foods.
* If I have a compost in my back yard, animals are going to come and dig through
it. If you have a cover for your compost bin and ensure a good layer of brown
food (at least one inch) is on the top you will not have any animal control
problems.
* If I donít measure the exact ratio of green to brown food it will not work.
Composting is not an exact science if you add more green food one week and then
balance it out with additional brown food the next week ñ that is fine. You will
be able to tell with time what your compost pile is lacking or needing.

Composting is easy, environmentally friendly, and an inexpensive way to fertilize your
lawn, garden, or house plants. With some time and patience your mature compost will be
ready to use anywhere from one month to one year.

Store-Bought Fertilizer versus Mature Compost

You may wonder what the different benefits are between fertilizer purchased from the
store and compost humus that you make at home. The aim of both is the same, to
improve the quality of your garden, lawn, and soil but there are differences too.

Many fertilizers that you purchase at your garden center contain artificial or toxic
elements to make your lawn look nice ñ not necessarily healthier. The benefit of this
type of fertilization is the ability to purchase a mix that meets the needs of your specific
lawn. If your lawn is too dry, patchy, or has a lot of weeds ñ there is a product available
that can target each problem (be aware that a pesticide is part of this solution). If you are
using a commercial mix in your garden, read all labels carefully to ensure the product is
safe to use around vegetation that is going to be consumed.

In contrast, when you use compost humus as a fertilizer there isnít a lot you can do to
customize the end result. But the good thing is, you donít really need to. Mature
compost is a process that occurs naturally (in a forest, the leaves on the ground are
composted with only help from Mother Nature). The compost contains a wide range of
benefits for your lawn that do not involve chemicals.

It will really depend on your personal preference whether or not you use commercial
fertilizer or compost. If you like the idea of using compost but not the idea of making it
yourself you can purchase the compost from some gardening centers. Also contact your
cityís recycling department, they may have a program set-up that allows residents to
donate food and other organic waste for composting and then share in the mature
compost when it is ready.